Star-Advertiser Endorses Kirk, says “Keep Caldwell at City’s Helm”

Honolulu Star-Advertiser Editorial, July 24, 2016

The editors of the Honolulu’s Star-Advertiser today announced their endorsement of Kirk Caldwell for re-election as Mayor.

Honolulu is undergoing rapid and enormous change,” they write. “Countering homelessness continues to be a struggle, with city government playing a lead role.” Mayor Caldwell “has engaged with nonprofits and others on projects to address the city’s homelessness crisis…attacking the challenge with…energy.”

On city services they note “He has made progress on the rehabilitation of many of Oahu’s battered roadways and other elements of the city’s aging infrastructure.”

On Honolulu’s rail transit system, the Star-Advertiser writes, “…only Mayor Kirk Caldwell has developed the foundations of a workable plan to navigate the 20-mile system’s difficult fiscal future. He remains the best candidate to fulfill this core mission, and voters should return him to the Honolulu mayor’s office.”

“The mayor is now more aggressively using his own bully pulpit to challenge the fiscal assumptions about the project. And he is making overtures to developers and others who could play a part in a new financing scheme for the final third of the route. Voters must wait to see what comes next, but they at least know Caldwell’s endgame and that he is spurred to move ahead.

“The same can’t be said about Djou’s plan,” they add. “He hasn’t put pencil to paper yet, not even in preliminary fashion, to cost out the possible alternatives.”

And the Star-Advertiser editors conclude:
“The bottom line: Caldwell has the best prospects for making further gains in the coming four years — not only in completing the rail, but helping Honolulu function better overall. He deserves more time to do so.”